Beat Magazine: Despite maintaining a heavy presence out on the road, and taking time out with solo projects, it’s been a long six years since Seattle-based rock outfit Heart released something new in terms of studio material.
But after what seems like an eternity, the Wilson sisters (vocalist Ann Wilson and vocalist/guitarist Nancy Wilson) have finally put together a follow up to their critically acclaimed Jupiters Darling release from 2004 in the form of their thirteenth effort Red Velvet Car.
Despite its acoustic framework, There You Go is a rocking opener, with Ric Markmann’s heavy bass work, some subtle strings and the Wilson sisters’ stunning vocal harmonies all coming together to create a powerful sound. The plugged-in WTF is a heavier anthem that manages to provide Ann with plenty of room to prove she’s still got what it takes to deliver on the vocal front after some 30 years belting it out for the band. Elsewhere, the darker blues edged and moody Red Velvet Car is easily one of the strongest tracks from Heart in years.
The Seattle tribute Queen City is the kind of a mid-paced acoustic rocker that’s characteristic of Heart’s earlier classic efforts, while the simple country/pop magnificence of Hey You and Sunflower showcase the depth and beauty of Nancy’s song writing and vocals.
The harder edged Wheels and Death Valley helps steer the album towards the heavier side of the band’s sound without losing any of the dynamics of the acoustic guitars that are evident throughout the album, while a folk edge is evident within Saffronia’s Mark.
Interestingly enough, the album also includes fan favourite Sand, which is a re-recording from the Wilson sister’s side project The Lovemongers.
As an added bonus, Red Velvet Car comes with two additional bonus tracks. Bootful Of Beer is a laid back rock track with some interesting string arrangements, but Closer To The Sun is an absolute stunning acoustic piece.
The length between releases may be getting a little longer these days, but the wait for Red Velvet Car has definitely been worth it.